Positive signals from a growing European economy and solid earnings from consumer and industrial firms like EBay and Caterpillar helped buoy U.S. stock futures on Thursday.
In the Southern Hemipshere, futures on Brazil’s Bovespa stock index also rose, as the central bank may stop raising interest rates in South America’s largest country. Henrique Meirelles, the central bank governor, announced that the benchmark Selic rate would rise 50 basis points to 10.75 percent, but it will probably remain there for the foreseeable future.
The generally optimistic news helped Dow Jones Industrial Average index futures rise 100 points to 10,158 at 8:50 a.m. EST, while the S&P futures showed a gain of 12.6 points to 1,076.5 and the the NASDAQ was up 17.75 points to 1,833.25. In Brazil, Bovespa futures climbed 885 points to 65,780, while futures on Mexico’s Bolsa were up 29 points to 32,364.
Yesterday the stock market gave a shaky performance as early optimism from Apple’s stellar earnings figures gave way to general pessimism when Ben Bernanke, chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve, said that the economic picture was “unusually uncertain.”
Once again, corporate profits outstripped economic fundamentals like unemployment and homebuilding, so while equities may continue to show gains, the macroeconomic situation may not yet improve.
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